£1.7m awarded to Essex councils to tackle homelessness

Close up of a homeless woman's hands on gloves being held by a caring woman's hands

Almost £1.7m of funding has been awarded to a partnership of ten Essex councils via the Rough Sleeping Initiative (RSI). This will be used to support rough sleepers transition from the streets and into sustained accommodation.

The Rough Sleeping Initiative was first announced by central government in 2018. The fund was put in place for local authorities to make an immediate impact on levels of homelessness and rough sleeping in their area.

The 2022-25 fund will be targeted at local support for those who are homeless. It will include additional outreach workers, support to access mental health services, emergency beds and funding to help homeless individuals with rental deposits.

Over the past two years, we have developed a partnership with nine city, borough and district councils - Braintree, Brentwood, Castle Point, Chelmsford, Epping Forest, Maldon, Rochford, Tendring and Uttlesford.

This partnership seeks to reduce people sleeping rough by providing support via a Rough Sleeper Outreach Team, which builds relationships and trust with rough sleepers.

Cllr John Spence, ECC Cabinet Member for Health and Adult Social Care, said: “Through hard work and collaboration our Essex partnership has been successful in securing this funding, which will be a huge step in continuing our work to help the homeless across Essex.

“The partnership between ECC, our borough, city and district partners and voluntary organisations have been working tirelessly to deliver much needed support to some of the county’s most marginalised citizens.”

The funding, alongside ECC’s wider work on homelessness and rough sleeping, helps to achieve the aims of our Everyone’s Essex Strategy, to promote the health, care, and wellbeing of all residents across the county.

If you have concern about someone sleeping rough in Essex, please visit the Streetlink website.